Skip to content

Diva Martin Essay-Design as a Museum, Please Touch

March 5, 2017

Design as a Museum – Please Touch

We see things in our sleep that we know are not there, much as we can have daydreams while awake. Some philosophers, G. H. Mead for example ascribe our understanding of external object to sensation of touch because “we see surfaces but feel insides” , Mead 1932.

Visiting V&A Museum I found a Carved Tile in the Asia Middle East collection.

It is an ornament frieze set horizontally above doorway, carved earth then ware under coloured glaze. From the Tom of Buyankuli Khan, Uzbekistan, Bukhara, about 1358. There is a relevant information to touch it and the collection is not protected with glass. The visitants stop and touch them. It is a focus point and visual tension because it is the only collection without glass in that wall and there is a continuous visual perception and the most relevant message is to touch placed next to the Braille text.

This tension and the information board make me think that is intentional strategy to impress and to make the visitant interact more actively with the museum. As well as creating a story board connection with the box of collection. The Tiles collection from the Tom of Buyakuli Khan who was assassinated , on the left hand side is a collection for Honouring the Dead, and the other side family painting , sharp objects like scissors and everyday objects. Maybe there is not a real connection but I believe there is an imaginary one. Objects related to people of power.

“A against the general-loss hypothesis is evidence that blind individuals show normal and often superior skills in task implicating touch and hearing as compared with the average sighted population. (Doucel st al. 2005, Gougoux, 2004 p27.)”

V&A Museum is assuming that everybody is able to see and walk around the museum finding information easily.

Also I asked in the desk information for the location of the Braille texts and sent me to internet and finding myself.

“Over two million people in the UK live with sight loss. That’s around one person in 30. Of these, around 360,000 people are registered with their local authority as blind or partially sighted. It is predicted that by 2020 the number of people with sight loss will rise to over 2,250,000”RNIB. UK


Feeling texture, temperature and shapes is like connecting yourself with the past an the real object in the present. This past that not everybody could see, that not everybody could feel. It is a hidden present, a hidden past and a hidden future for those who have lost sight.

We are in an age when we are able to create robots, where we could experience a virtual reality but The V&A Museum still not ready for those who could perceive the real world from inside.


John J. Rieser, Dnaiel H. Ashmead, Ford F. Edner, Anne L. Corn, 2008, Blindness and Brain Plasticity in Navigation and Object Perception. New York, Publisher by Tailor and Francis Group. Pgs.27,259.

RNIB, Supporting people with sight lost.

Diva Martin Essay 2 please Touch.pdf


From → Uncategorized

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: